OS X: How to do Math in Spotlight

| TMO Quick Tip

Spotlight is one of those things on my Mac that I often forget how often I use. Of course it's great for finding documents and launching apps, but there's another way in which I constantly use it; as a calculator.

Doin' some math in SpotlightDoing some Math in the Spotlight bar

In fact, I use Spotlight so often to do quick calculations that I've nearly forgotten that the Mac comes with a full-blown app. All you need to do is type your calculation into the Spotlight bar and it'll produce an answer. It's fast, incredibly convenient, and quite powerful. Enjoy!

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OK that’s one of the coolest tips ever. I’ll be using that a LOT


Calculating in Spotlight has been around since 10.4 (if my feeble little grey cells remember correctly)

Michael Johnston

@furbies it’s definitely been there since the beginning. It’s just one of those things that people may have missed or forgotten about.


sadly it could be better

using command-c on the highlighted result line picks up your equation, but not the answer

also selecting “Calculator” in the highlighted result line opens the Calculator but does not enter either your equation or the result into the Calculator

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